Keeping Garay was pivotal for Chargers

March, 29, 2012
3/29/12
4:55
PM ET
The San Diego Chargers’ re-signing of defensive tackle Antonio Garay is a significant one.

I thought Garay was the last priority free agent remaining in the division and he was my 10th-best unrestricted free agent in the division. The Chargers had several priority free agents and Garay was one of them. It was essential that he was kept.

Garay is an interesting player. He is 32, but he didn’t really become a viable NFL player until 2010 when he joined the Chargers. The journeyman became a big part of the Chargers’ defense that season and he has since been a cog to the defensive line. He had 57 tackles in 2011. He is a run stuffer, who is very tough. Garay is most effective when his snaps are limited so he doesn’t wear down.

The Chargers are trying to get younger on the defensive line, but Garay has an essential role and his re-signing was pivotal.

Bill Williamson | email

ESPN Oakland Raiders reporter

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